• In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters. Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. (Genesis 1:1–5, NRSV)

Christopher Wren was obsessed with light, and filled his buildings with it. He was an astronomer, a physicist, a mathematician, and one of the founders of the Royal Society, before he was an architect, and for him, and for many others of his time, the light of reason was a God-given avenue to truth. Light was the obvious way to represent the gift of reason, so Wren filled his buildings with light by glazing the windows with plain glass.

The Victorians saw things differently, and reglazed the windows of this church and many others with stained glass. This church’s stained glass was destroyed by German bombing during the Second World War, and after the war the windows were returned to the way in which Wren would have wanted them. 

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